Sports

UI coach plays to strength

RANTOUL – He spends more time with the players than their position coaches do. Or their girlfriends.

Illinois strength and conditioning coach Jim Zielinski is part teacher, part psychiatrist and part nutritionist.


Tatelines: UI grid fans need to see ray of hope

Before embarking on the necessary August ritual of detailing Illini football possibilities, let's agree on something.

No amount of spin-doctoring, tub-thumping or tradition-citing – no glowing stories about prize recruits – will influence an apathetic Gus Phan to believe a turnaround is on the near horizon for Illini football.


Asmussen's Daily Diary

The Illinois football players aren''t the only ones spending August in Rantoul. Staff writer Bob Asmussen, who covers UI football for The News-Gazette, is also a regular in the Pacesetter Community. His thoughts:


ITA honors Illini tennis teams

The Illinois men's and women's tennis teams have received Division I All-Academic honors from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.


News and notes from Sunday's practice:

- BIG CROWD:

Sunny skies and not-too-hot temperatures made for a nice day to watch practice. Thirty cars filled the grass beyond end zone, with about 50 fans for Sunday's lone session.


Next stop for Illini: U.S. Open

Illinois sophomore Nathan Zeder teamed up with TCU's Scott Eddins to win the men's doubles title Sunday at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Summer Championships in Williamsburg, Va.

Zeder and Eddins beat Duke's Andres Pedroso and William & Mary's Patrick Brown 6-1, 6-4 in the final of their first tournament together. They first met last week, when they were paired up in the doubles draw.


Asmussen''s Daily Diary

The Illinois football players aren''t the only ones spending August in Rantoul. Staff writer Bob Asmussen, who covers UI football for The News-Gazette, is also a regular in the Pacesetter Community. His thoughts:


UI vet Willis mentor to kiddie corps

RANTOUL – The other Illinois football players used to tease Lenny Willis about being the local hero.

His friends, the receivers, have found a new reason to make fun of the Centennial product: Age.


Tate: Rest is best golf remedy for Stricker

MEDINAH – Tall, easygoing Steve Stricker has hit one of those golfing dips that seem to haunt the game's rangy free-swingers.

Face it, the farther you hit the golf ball, the harder it is to keep it on the short grass. This is, for Stricker, a problem that always lies in wait, raising its ugly head at the slightest provocation. Statistics show that in his last previous nose dive of 1997, he was 191st in driving accuracy.


Johnson picture of health

RANTOUL – No. 9 looks normal enough.

He runs around without a limp. He throws the ball hard and straight. He barks signals loud and clear.

Just another guy trying to play college football, right?


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